The trauma began my freshman year in high school. “Why?”-I asked continuously. I never really cared about people’s opinions before my 9th grade year began. I guess it was because I was never conscious about maintaining “an image”. I started to inject magazine articles, television personality’s opinions, and the media’s idea of what “being beautiful” meant into my system, adopting the idea that I needed to “fit in”. Suddenly, I became “image conscious” and wanted to look differently because I didn’t fit into the mold. My path would take me to a place where I would take any shortcut to achieve perfection in the area of reducing body mass. In my own mind I believed this would bring some sort of satisfaction and acceptance. Bulimia happened. Once I started to do it, I never called my condition what it really was and never acknowledged the fact that I pushed myself unwillingly into an eating disorder. It was my own “issue” to deal with. And I wouldn’t tell anyone I was doing it.
During this period it was hard for me to open up and ask for help, but my condition worsened and I felt had to talk to someone. Two of the people that I finally admitted to that I was hurting myself were my youth pastors. They were a great support, but at the beginning I didn’t want to accept the truth about what I was doing. I always liked it when people told me the truth in my face. This was different. When my youth pastors gave me advice, it felt like they penetrated my secret world so much that it honestly did hurt. I now realize that it was for the best. God also used my closest friend to wake me up and get me to open my eyes about what I was doing. But I was stubborn and didn’t want to change.
Days and weeks passed by and it became a situation where I threw up everything I ate. To make matters worse, I used to eat the most insignificant portions and small sized snacks, like candy or chocolate and even small amounts of juice for lunch and dinner. Me health kept worsening but I didn’t care. The only thing I wanted to achieve was total weight loss. I thought I had already given my situation to God, but I continually kept vomiting. I realize now that I never really handed it to Him in the first place. I saw things changing. I know God has always been there for me- listening and watching over me. He was waiting for me to turn over all of this “heavy baggage” to Him, but I had problems doing exactly that. During this period it always seemed like God had a way to speak to me directly or thru someone else. This constant pull and tug continued throughout my high school years until the day came where I couldn’t take it anymore and I gave my condition over to God. That was the turning point.
Before I didn’t want to go outside of my house a lot because of how the culture taught me how I should look, and I didn’t fit inside that bill.
Once I handed my eating disorder to God, He showed me that He values me just how I am because that’s the way He made me. Besides, the healthy and obvious way to lose weight is to exercise and eat well. The most important truth is that Jesus loves me for who I am. I now recognize that those people who do truly care about me love me for who I am, not how I look. I do regret not going to the Lord earlier, but God still reaches out to us even in our the most dire straits.
My experience has taken me to a place where I can see how wonderful God is and how He is always there for us even in the times when we think He is not. As young women we have to love ourselves. If we learn to love others the way God loves us, we can truly learn to love ourselves. Now I’m losing weight in a healthy way: running, exercising, and most importantly eating healthy. Of course, I have days where laziness takes over, but every new day has a beginning and an end. I know Jesus is there to lift me up every time I fall. When we give our problems to Him, even the ones that we think are insignificant, everything changes. It is then when we start seeing everything thru a different lens and are free to get to know Him and worship Him better each and every day of our lives. I thank God for everything he has done in my life, and for letting me be where I am now.
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away;
behold, all things are become new.” 2 Corinthians 4:17
***The person behind this testimony has chosen to remain unanimous for the sake of privacy***